Social Question

Apparently_Im_The_Grumpy_One's avatar

Why do we talk more about gun control than vehicle control?

Asked by Apparently_Im_The_Grumpy_One (3901points) December 3rd, 2015

Ruling out suicides, gun deaths number roughly half as high as vehicle deaths in the U.S. (stats as of 1979). But nobody seems to be arguing that our vehicles should be taken away.. or that the type of vehicle we drive should be restricted based on vehicle deaths.. or that vehicles shouldn’t be allowed in certain areas just because they are vehicles.. or that people should have rigorous screening before owning a car. Why is that? Why is something whose ownership is protected by the constitution (guns) more adamantly argued against than one that isn’t (cars)? Cars are killing far more people! If you replace “mass shooting” with “big crash” than cars are vastly more dangerous.

Bonus question for those able to read this far:
What was so different in 2000 or so when gun deaths were at an extreme low? Shouldn’t we be seeing what was going on then and move back in that direction?

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76 Answers

longgone's avatar

It’s about the culture. The U.S. is dealing with an insane amount of violence, and its citizens want to find out why that is. There is something inherently troubling about a person going out with the plan of killing another human being. Car crashes are accidents. The shootings are a symptom, and in looking for their cause, the availability and celebration of guns can’t be ignored.

I, for one, do argue that our use of cars should be severely restricted, for environmental reasons as well as our safety.

Buttonstc's avatar

Because vehicles are already rather strictly regulated. Plus there are rather stiff penalties for drunk driving (altho they vary widely by state) and in some states a conviction results in a breathylizer type appliance to be conneted to the ignition to prevent more incidents of irresponsible use.

And, not every single auto crash is due to drunkenness or irresponsible use.

Every single gun death or injury resulting from usage by a child is 100% preventable on the part of the adult gun owner. But I don’t see too many cases of being penalized for leaving your gun open to children’s use. That’s ridiculous.

If a child manages to get your car keys and drive the car into a crash, there are penalties galore and no end of financial as well as legal consequences.

Yet with each incidence of mass gun violence, the NRA is there unapologetically proclaiming that the solution is to be found in more guns (supposedly being weilded by “good guys”.)

And they refuse to advocate closing the loophole which allows those who are on a terrorist watchlist to purchase as many guns as they choose. How does that make any sense?

At least drunk drivers don’t have a lobbying group designed to promote freer distribution of alcohol with no consequences at all. There are consequences aplenty for irresponsible use of an automobile.

There are none that I can see for being the irresponsible owner of a gun (even if your kid kills others in the process when a simple lock would have prevented that.)

So, you tell mewhat further limits should be imposed upon those who use cars irresponsibly and I will likely agree.

I’d just like to see the same type of common sense applied to gun owners who fail to secure their weapons so that a child cannot access them.

And if you think that’s just a minor problem, kindly do a little basic research on how many kids are killed or maimed every year because a gun was not properly secured. You’ll be shocked at how many.

But they have the NRA there to protect their rights. The kids don’t have anyone.

SQUEEKY2's avatar

I totally agree, there are a lot more people killed in auto accidents than by gun deaths in both our countries, they say vehicles are strictly controlled yeah sure you see the way most people drive lately?
I don’t know the exact stat but there is something like one vehicle stolen every minute in North America, and look how big they are compared to a gun.
Lets make getting your drivers license a lot harder ,say mandatory defensive driving test, course on vehicle maintenance , and prove you can drive with out using the cell phone that alone would save countless lives every year.
Do we cry for that NO?
We want more gun control,that will save people better,after all you sure as heck won’t MURDER someone with an illegal firearm now would you?

jca's avatar

We need vehicles for our own transportation and for transporting goods and food, but we don’t necessarily need machine guns and semi-automatic weapons.

SQUEEKY2's avatar

@jca true but on those same lines does someone need a hyper super car than reach speeds of over 200mph?

jca's avatar

That kind of car is not prevalent the way sub machine guns are prevalent, @SQUEEKY2.

Jackiavelli's avatar

Looking at the bigger picture, statistically, crime rates have been steadily declining for decades even as gun sales surge at record levels.

@jca Statistically, in the U.S, much more victims are killed by criminals who use handguns than rifles. How, then, can you logically demand for rifles to be outlawed if they’re not the main weapon of choice for violence? Furthermore, semi-automatic weapons are much more efficient weapons to be used for home defence for a myriad of reasons – better recoil, capacity, club, etc. Finally, a semi-automatic weapon is not a fully-automatic weapon which is regulated as a machine gun. There is no valid reason to outlaw it. The difference is that a fully-automatic firearm can fire repeatedly and quickly as long as you hold down the trigger, but a semi-automatic, like any firearm other than a fully-automatic, fires only once when you pull the trigger.

Apparently_Im_The_Grumpy_One's avatar

Why did you make the last part SMALL? It’s a live example of what I’m talking about.

I understand your point and yes, of course, it’s about the culture and the nature of the actual death occurring. That’s part of why I rule out suicide from this argument. But the fact remains that cars are more dangerous. If you started restricting cars like guns – the uproar would spike like the punch at a college party.

“Because vehicles are already rather strictly regulated.”
What? I could drive at 16 after a 10 minute road test. That’s not strict. Those other penalties you’re talking about are “post crime”. With guns it’s in reverse. So, why don’t we more strictly punish those who are actually guilty of a crime? I can’t read any further.

Replace guns with knitting, or guitar playing, or whatever hobby that you have. Gun laws don’t bother some people so much because they don’t use them. It’s not infringing on any part of their lives. And yet all of the gun control arguments which would equally work with cars are ignored because lots more people use cars. It’s dishonest and double-standardy at best if you ask me.

Besides all that.. do we need cars? People survived with their “goods and food” long before cars existed. So in the interest of safety, why not get rid of cars? We can use wagons and horses. Wouldn’t it be safer?

jca's avatar

If we lived in Little House on the Prairie, where work was a few miles from home, tops, and we could take the horse or walk there, it would be do-able to go back to horse and buggy. However, we’re in such a suburban culture that my 45 minute ride to work (about 45 miles) would take hours by horse and buggy – not really too practical to do on a daily basis.

JLeslie's avatar

There was a time when vehicles were talked about a lot. I remember stories of auto manufacturers doing the math for how many people would die in car crashes and the money they would pay off in settlements and lawsuits, and the figured that’s cheaper than putting in more expensive parts. Big arguments about seat belt laws. Changes in DUI laws. Ralph Nadar talking about air bags. After years of arguing, lobbying, and legal wrangling, we finally have relatively safe cars.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

@jca actually those cars do out number submachine guns. Unless you are uber rich they are out of reach. Since 1986 there have not been any made legally for public purchase. The ones that were grandfathered in are now worth a fortune. The ATF states that there are ~180,000 of those and they are all registered. Many of them are going to be non-functional at this point. There are many more cars that can hit 200mph

Mimishu1995's avatar

In my country vehicle control is a problem. So I guess gun looks like some kind of a distraction.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

As with most things in the US it is not about logic but emotion, people feel the need to be able to drive when and where they want, no waiting. In a sense it is a very latent for of selfishness, I want what I want when I want it. Because restricting any use of vehicles to the level yu might be suggesting may impede the whim of many Americans. They will not go for it because they feel they maybe caught in the net, they don’t have or want guns so any stiff regulations against it will nogt affect them. People will go against sound logic if it affects them and how they want to do things. That is why in spite of how many vehicular deaths or its increase, it will glide under the radar of most.

stanleybmanly's avatar

There are a lot more people killed in cars. There are also a lot more people spending a lot more time behind the wheel than there are twirling their guns. And then there’s the fact that the automobile was not specifically designed to kill as many people as possible in the shortest space of time. Care to predict whether the next mass killing at a school will go down as vehicular homicide?

Buttonstc's avatar


You ask “so why don’t we more strictly punish those who are actually guilty of a crime?”

You reiterate my question exactly. Is it not a crime to allow young children unrestricted access to guns? So, when it does happen, why no punishment for those who can’t bother themselves with a simple lock?

Should they be allowed further unrestricted access to guns since a dead or maimed child is more than ample evidence of the irresponsibility of the adult?

And if you wanted to further stiffen up penalties for those who choose to drive drunk, you certainly won’t see me protesting it.

But so far I’ve not seen much regarding consequences for gun crimes (and, yes, allowing a four year old access to your gun is criminal and should be worthy of serious jail time.)

So how come that doesn’t happen?

ibstubro's avatar

Because vehicles are the life-blood of our society and guns are bleeding the life out of our society?

Honestly, every time I hear one of these spurious justifications for having a legal arsenal in your house, the more nearly I come to supporting a ban on guns.
I was raised redneck with a ‘gun collection’ in the house. There are a number of guns in my house at this time. I would gladly give them all up if the babies who died at Sandy Hook could live again.

I don’t understand where the fear of being without a gun comes from?
I don’t go places I don’t feel safe.
I don’t need a gun.
If I’m in an unfamiliar place, and I feel unsafe, I use my cell phone. Not a gun.

jerv's avatar

@jca Most mass shootings are with hunting weapons, and most more personal violence is with handguns. SMGs are utterly irrelevant. Full-auto and burst-fire weapons are still restricted; if you want those, you better be SWAT or military since even regular police can’t have anything that fires more than once per trigger pull. And since the only thing an SMG is good for is firing pistol rounds more rapidly than a pistol without breaking/melting, you won’t see many semi-auto SMGs. They are bigger and heavier than pistols while being no better at single-shot shooting.

Now, if you think even semi-auto is overkill and that nobody needs more than one shot, you have never worked a farm or been in the woods where some predators come in packs. If you have five coydogs running after you, and only one shot, your best bet is to shoot yourself; semi-auto can come in real handy even for things other than shooting people.

@ibstubro That fear often comes from being in a situation where a gun saved your life. Go ahead and call the cops on a bear. See who gets to you first.

jerv's avatar

Now, as to the bonus question, I’ve seen a few things recently about how mass shootings weren’t a real problem until Obama became president, therefore Obama (and, by extension, anyone more Liberal than Ted Cruz) are the cause.

There are enough herp-a-derps out there that either honestly believe that or don’t care if it’s true so long as it “justifies” their views that I really don’t think you can get an answer to that. Any true answer will be refuted by those who think the Tea Party is left-leaning, and nobody in their right mind will blame everyone who isn’t either a right wing nut or a fundamentalist Protestant, so you really won’t get a consensus.

gorillapaws's avatar

It’s about how much lethality we trust the average citizen to wield. Should the average joe have access to nuclear firepower? Chemical/biological weapons? Anti-aircraft missiles? Tanks? RPGs? Regular grenades? Fully automatic firearms? Semi automatic? Firearms that require cocking between shots? Muskets that take 30 seconds between shots? Knives? Pointy sticks?

I think a shotgun is more-than sufficient for home defense, and good lighting with a large dog is probably even better security than a weapon.

Every year car makers try to make them safer. Gun manufacturers do the opposite. Also, I can pull a trigger very quickly (so can most people without physical disabilities of the hand); that’s a poor argument for why semi automatic weapons aren’t a concern.

jerv's avatar

@gorillapaws Try telling the wild animals and the whacked-out meth-heads to hold on while you reload or cycle the action then. And trust me, there are some things that can and will take out a large dog. Also, shotguns are unwieldy in close quarters unless you use a Whippet, but those are also illegal as hell.

Would you care to explain biometric safeties though? Or how about some of the other things things that stop a gun from going off unless it’s held securely in the hand and the trigger deliberately pulled as opposed to the old guns that could (and did) go off when bumped or dropped? Hell, even barrels that don’t spontaneously explode are a bit of a safety feature compared to even 75 years ago. Gun makers make guns safer to own and operate, and rely on the owner to not be a murderous psychopath.

Now, I personally don’t have (or even really want) a gun, but looking at arguments like your’s almost make me want to get one. I mean, if bad reasoning full of holes and mistruths are wrong, then me getting a gun would be the right thing to do! And the icing on the cake is thinking that we can close Pandora’s Box.

LostInParadise's avatar

Since use of vehicles means that there will be associated homicides, it follows that allowing people to drive is a tacit approval of homicide. In the interests of consistency, we should legalize homicide. If you are concerned about the prospect of being killed then arm every adult, child and dog in your household.

ibstubro's avatar

A bear? @jerv?
Call a cop on a bear?
Really? That’s all you got?

jca's avatar

I always like how gun advocates justify why we need automatic and semi-automatic weapons with their discombobulated logic.

Jackiavelli's avatar

If you guys care so much about life, why is the focus on vehicles when the leading causes of death are
Heart disease: 611,105
Cancer: 584,881
Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 149,205
Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases): 128,978
Diabetes: 75,578

While firearm deaths are
Number of deaths: 11,208

Comparing these numbers, we can see your priorities are screwed up or do you just have an agenda? If you really care about life like you claim to do with your anti-gun/gun control rhetoric, you would focus on health-related deaths first. Do you know what it takes, medically speaking, to stay healthy and not get sick? Diet and exercise. Yet I do not hear a mass movement of people calling out for food and exercise control?

JLeslie's avatar

Plenty of people are calling out for better diet and exercise. Give me a break. Government has committees and research devoted to it. We have TV shows with doctors who talk about. It’s all around us.

It doesn’t guarantee you won’t get sick, but certainly diet and exercise are high on the list of important for total health and avoiding illness.

Jackiavelli's avatar

So your idea of food and exercise control is using rhetoric? And yet, for guns, it is actual policy making and having police monitor and chase people down in their home and place of business to tell them what guns the’re allowed to have or sell?

You don’t see the hypocrisy there?

JLeslie's avatar

No one is chasing people down.

ibstubro's avatar

”...chasing people down…”
Talk about rhetoric.

I’ll have you know, @Jackiavelli, that I wholly own and operate a business in the state of Illinois and the state tells me that my business can be fined if anyone is caught with a lit cigarette with 15 feet of any opening in the building.

How many homicides have been committed by stroke?

Jackiavelli's avatar

@JLeslie Haha? Are you serious? Have you never visited California or New York?

You have laws telling you what guns you can have or cannot have, what guns you can carry and not carry, what guns you can sell and cannot sell, what guns are banned entirely. You have background checks. There is actual policy, a regulatory committee, and police enforcement.

And yet, for food and exercise, you offer control through rhetoric instead of policy making and having an entire regulatory committee and police force to enforce it?

Do you not remember what bloomberg tried to do in New York City with salt and sugary drinks? The city wasn’t having any of that nonsense. Judge told him to get lost.

Please explain the hypocrisy here. Why rhetoric for food and exercise and strict policy, regulatory committees and police enforcement for guns?

Apparently_Im_The_Grumpy_One's avatar

“After years of arguing, lobbying, and legal wrangling, we finally have relatively safe cars.”
And yet still twice as many fatalities as guns. Did we just get tired of fighting for safety here? Or does the general public just want to take their chances and assume the known risk of their existence?

” There are also a lot more people spending a lot more time behind the wheel than there are twirling their guns. ”
Why? Shouldn’t we limit that time based on the death toll?

“And then there’s the fact that the automobile was not specifically designed to kill as many people as possible in the shortest space of time. ”
Neither are most guns. That’s something a non-gun owner would certainly think though.

“Care to predict whether the next mass killing at a school will go down as vehicular homicide?”
This is just silly and it doesn’t seem as if you read anything above.

” Is it not a crime to allow young children unrestricted access to guns? So, when it does happen, why no punishment for those who can’t bother themselves with a simple lock?”
Yes. Absolutely punish them. I agree.

“Because vehicles are the life-blood of our society and guns are bleeding the life out of our society?”
This is just sensationalism. I really hope you never get mugged – cuz they’re probably not gonna cower from your cell phone.. despite how quickly you can send a text. Silliness aside… you don’t care because guns aren’t something you use. They aren’t a hobby for you. You don’t hunt or sport shoot.. I got it. That’s why I’m bringing in the comparison of vehicles. I bet you’d be “up in arms” (pun intended) if they told you you couldn’t own the model of car you have.

Jackiavelli's avatar

@ibstubro …chasing people down…Talk about rhetoric.

Uh, are you saying the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) doesn’t actually do their job? Are you saying that local police officers are not arresting people for having illegal firearms, or illegal carry? No one is enforcing the current gun laws? Is that what you’re saying? If so, how did the prisoners get in prison for that offense, then?

How many homicides have been committed by stroke?

Invalid argument. The crux of the logic behind your argument is that you care about life, so it doesn’t matter whether someone was murdered or whether someone died because of irresponsible behavior towards their health.

JLeslie's avatar

@Apparently_Im_The_Grumpy_One. No, we aren’t tired. Companies are looking into driverless cars, partly for safety, and for other reasons. We also now have back-up cameras, which is fairly recent. The problem is there is still human error and unexpected events on the road. Many people need to drive daily in our suburban and rural cities and towns, so we can’t do away with the car altogether. We don’t need to have a gun daily, unless you are a hunter, cop, live out in the wilderness, etcetera.

jerv's avatar

@ibstubro Yes, a bear. What, you want me to come up with some hyperbole, or would you rather I stuck with actual situations that have actually happened?

Since people think that the cops will protect us with their guns so we don’t need any of our own, that implies that cops are available everywhere all the time and can respond before you get killed, it seems reasonable to present something I’ve seen a few times while living in an area where cellphones didn’t work in a town that had one part-time cop.

In Seattle, it’s 25 feet, but it’s the smoker that gets the fine.

Jackiavelli's avatar

And that is also assuming all the cops know how to shoot NYPD: 9 shooting bystander victims hit by police gunfire

Or if they spot the difference between a weapon and a product. “Police Almost Kill Teens For Setting Up Telescope That Cops Thought Looked Like a Rifle:

stanleybmanly's avatar

@Jackiavelli so your position is that gunners are being picked on? A massacre a day is the price of freedom? No one should complain until firearms fatalities exceed motor vehicle deaths? The one thing I will grant you is that as the frequency of these events increases, we’ll all get used to it (just as with the motor vehicle deaths) There really isn’t any point to the argument. There are entirely too many guns among us now for any plausible remedy. The gun death situation just like the health care debacle is merely another of those anomalies peculiar to our country. You’re right What’s the difference? Shot up in the classroom or mangled on the freeway. If you survive either, the medical expenses guarantee a life of destitution. There was a time when the consensus in this country was that you judged the civilized regions by the absence of weaponry. Perhaps we’re better off when everyone’s armed to the teeth. It looks like we’re gonna sure find out.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

@ibstubro Bears are not an outlandish scenario. I was chased by one a year and a half ago. The only time I’m carrying is when I go backpacking. Pepper spray comes out first and if that don’t work… The odds of needing either are low but it sure helps me sleep in my glorified tarp better.

Cops will even tell you we’ll be there in hours when seconds matter. I carry pepper spray with me since it’s basically legal everywhere. If people would at least do that some of these mass shootings could be stopped earlier. If gun free zones are eliminated and the “gun culture stigma” can be lessened by alleviating the fear people have for them they could be prevented. This is the same way hornets prevent people or animals from just knocking down the nest. There will always be the rare honeybadger who just don’t give a shit and we simply can’t stop that.

jerv's avatar

@ARE_you_kidding_me I wish that honey badgers were rare in our ranks, but looking at the news, it’s obvious that many people ran out of fucks to give long ago. If nothing else, look who is still leading the polls in the race for the GOP nomination.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

@jerv I question if he really is. This makes me think that the poll number calcs are complete bullshit.

ibstubro's avatar

Bears are an outlandish scenario.

Let’s see.

**You have to be 16yo+ in order to drive a passenger vehicle.
**In Illinois you are required to take a state-sanctioned (pay service) drivers education course before you can apply for a license.
**Both a written (knowledge) and and driving (proficiency) test must be passed to get a license.
**If you want a higer caliber, commercial driving license, you have to have training and an additional test.
**Driving impaired is a serious offense and periodic checkpoints are set up for enforcement.
**Driving comes with a host of restrictions from having your headlights on if you’re using your windshield wipers to passing on the right.
** Police literally “monitor and chase people down” for even minor driving infractions.
I’m sure I’m omitting dozens, if not hundreds, of others.

The short answer is that we’ve done a lot (I won’t fall into the trap of saying “all we can”) to control vehicles.
Not a fraction to control guns.

Show me a CDL license for semi-automatic guns.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

@ibstubro You can take a car just about everywhere. The laws are simple to understand, you don’t have to spend half a day wading through the regulations if you simply want to cross state lines with one. If you break a simple regulation with a car like letting your tags expire you get a ticket. You can’t do that with guns, you do something simple like that and you lose the privilege, go to jail or worse. It’s almost impossible to know the all of laws for guns, they are ridiculously legislated and many of them don’t even make sense. Many law enforcement officers don’t even know them all. It was ten times harder to get a carry permit for a gun than it was to get a drivers license also. I certainly did not have to submit fingerprints and go through a background check for a DL. I sure did for a permit. To be fair, the drivers test and the range test were roughly comparable.

jerv's avatar

@ARE_you_kidding_me True. The “official” polls also have Clinton ahead of Sanders despite plenty of evidence that more people Bernie over Bill’s Baggage.

@ibstubro First off, if you think bears are an outlandish scenario, then you REALLY need to get out more. You may not worry about bears for the same reason Floridians don’t worry about plowing snow, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t quite a large number of people who live in circumstances far different from your’s.

That said, you might want to take a look at Vermont’s gun laws. They are among the laxest in the nation, yet even they have restrictions comparable to operating a vehicle. Other states are generally stricter. The punchline is that, according to some figures, they have a lower firearms murder rate than even Japan or Australia. It’s pretty low in other places with lax laws too while DC used to beat any five states combined when they had a total ban.

So first prove to me beyond all shadow of a doubt that there is a correlation between gun laws and firearms crime rates, and do so within the confines of the US. The last few times I looked, there was a far higher correlation with poverty rates, unemployment rates, and political affiliation of the state in question than with gun laws. The only figures I’ve seen that “prove” gun bans work are not only in vastly different cultures than our’s, but also countered by a fair number of places like Vermont and thus will be dismissed as “previously disproven; try again”.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@jerv In the end, the only real correlation to be gleaned from auto mishaps and gun deaths is that they are both a reflection of the number of cars and guns floating around out there. When you think about it, if there actually ARE 300 million guns in civilian hands in this country, the levels of mayhem are actually deceptively low and lacking truly draconian measures, have nowhere to go but up. 300 million guns distributed throughout a population of 300 million people simply guarantees that any criminal, malcontent or disturbed individual can assemble an arsenal with ease. As with motor vehicles, laws and regulations will filter out a few psychopaths. The ATF might intercept an occasional machine gun, and an alert cop might trip up one drunk driver in 100. But we’d better face it. All the rules and regulations in the world are no longer going to save us. A certain percentage of us are just plain defective. The guns, like the cars, are just too plentiful, and available to all of us. We can argue over what the percentage is of those defectives, or over what the tipping point is in numbers of guns available to them. But there is little point to arguing whether or not that tipping point has been crossed. It isn’t the fact that Americans lust after guns that renders us the undisputed world champs in gunplay, it’s simply the fact WE have seen to it that there are enough guns that ANYONE can get one. And in this, the NRA and gun huggers everywhere can take well deserved pride, because the sheer numbers of guns in the country assure us that each of us is guaranteed the right to shoot anyone we please. Think about it. Poverty, insanity, age, there are no REAL impediments. In this land of plenty, our wonderful weapons bonanza assures us all that EVERYONE gets a “shot”. Folks, it’s democracy in action, and my advice—we better get used to it!

ibstubro's avatar

@jerv just proved you were a moron for asking this question, and he’s on your side!

List of fatal wild bear attacks in the US is about 2 since 2010

I can take my car just about anywhere, @ARE_you_kidding_me?
By what stretch of the imagination? Where are there no restrictions on vehicular traffic?
The laws are easy to understand

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

@ibstubro Um, you sure can. There are these things called roads that lead you like… everywhere. They were designed for you know


ibstubro's avatar

But where can I take my car without restrictions, @ARE_you_kidding_me?

I have a penchant for driving 80+ MPH.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

You get a ticket for speeding, you don’t go to jail, lose your job and have your financial future destroyed if you accidentally cross some obscure fuzzy imaginary line that makes little sense. Just try to understand your local gun laws. There are endlessly more restrictions on guns than cars. There is no feasible way to spin that the other way.

jerv's avatar

@stanleybmanly In computer terms, we’re trying all sorts of hardware and software solutions to dance around the fact that it’s a wetware issue. While hardware sometimes fails and software sometimes crashes, but the most common error is operator error. You can guess how someone with a huge ego would never admit to that and lame the computer instead.

@ibstubro Most bear attacks occur in places where gun laws are a little looser anyways. Also, @ARE_you_kidding_me is entirely correct. Some states allow you to carry a loaded firearm on foot (open or concealed) but prohibit carrying a loaded gun in a car; in must be unloaded, and (in some places) put in the trunk or somewhere otherwise inaccessible from the passenger compartment.

That assumes that they stay in their home state; there is little/no interstate reciprocity in gun laws. For instance, Vermonters have to be a little concerned if they go to NH and very careful if they go to Mass or NY. So there are still a rather large number of restrictions for locals, and those who do any interstate travel are wrapped up in multiple different brands of red tape.

And while you may not cross state lines often, there are many who do. Figure that each state in New England is about the size of a county in a state like, well, most other states in the union, and interstate travel is a daily thing for many millions of Americans.

You probably just don’t see that as restrictive since it’s not nearly as restricted as you would like. Or maybe because you’re just angry that the law restrains your lead foot and you’re just trying to ruin someone else’s enjoyment. I can’t say for sure, but I can’t think of any logical basis for your arguments other than you having a different set of available facts from which to base a conclusion. Experience shapes opinion, and since we’ve already established long ago that you and I have vastly different experiences, it stands to reason that we would have vastly different opinions on many things.

Jackiavelli's avatar

@stanleybmanly so your position is that gunners are being picked on?

You’re deriving an entirely different point from my argument. I introduced policy, regulatory committees, and enforcement of gun laws into this conversation to expose the hypocrisy of the argument that there is diet and exercise control in this country. Other than rhetoric, there is no control at all. There is no policy. There is no regulatory committee. There are no enforcers.

There is an argument to be made that gunners are indeed being picked on. The argument rests on a simple fact – a criminal obtains firearms regardless of the current gun laws. They get it from their friends, family, or an illegal source, and as I pointed out several times now, anyone can print any type of firearm on a 3D-printer for less than $500. This price will decline further in the future. This renders conversations about gun control irrelevant. Therefore, any gun control by its very nature is picking on gunners.

A massacre a day is the price of freedom?

This is a false line of questioning. It assumes that limiting freedom limits massacres.

No one should complain until firearms fatalities exceed motor vehicle deaths?

As long as the whiners have their priorities screwed up, they’re disingenuous. 1 million+ are dying from health issues, but they’re focused on 11,000 firearm homicides. That is like tending to a flesh wound instead of a severed artery. The same flawed line of reasoning is being applied to some of these “gun controls.” Handguns kill more people than rifles, and yet gun control is focused on rifles? This only further proves there is another agenda than caring about lives. Besides, you’re not going to ban handguns. It certainly doesn’t follow to ban rifles which are far less used for homicides.

The main hypocrisy is that you’re not actually going to do anything about diet and exercise control either because the people and the court system will tell you to get lost as they did in New York City to bloomberg. You’re not going to run background checks on people who are fat and sick. You will not tell people what they should eat, when they should it, or what they’re not allowed to eat. You will not ban certain foods. You will not force people to exercise. You will not fine or imprison them for any of this. That is why 1 million+ will continue to die. The hypocrisy is that you’re not ashamed at all to try and pull this same dishonest, bullshit-control on guns despite the flawed logic and contrary behavior towards the evidence.

Also, what are the logical/sensible gun laws being proposed? California has the strictest gun laws in the country. The NRA has no influence over California’s gun policy. California is so strict that a lot of gun dealers opt out of doing business because they have to manufacture specific guns to meet CA laws. Assault rifles are banned as are high-capacity magazines. Background checks. Murder is illegal. Pipe-bombs are illegal. Having a bomb-lab is illegal. This shooting took place in a gun-free-zone where the victims curled up into a little ball to die because they cannot defend themselves and the average police response time in the U.S is 10 minutes.

The one thing I will grant you is that as the frequency of these events increases,

Uh, for decades now, murder rates/crime rates have been declining while firearm ownership, simultaneously, has increased.

The gun death situation just like the health care debacle is merely another of those anomalies peculiar to our country

I mentioned this in another topic, but it is relevant to your comment here as well. If violence is to be addressed, it requires an understanding of the root causes of violence. Anyone who studied criminology will show you the underlying causes through statistical correlations with criminal behavior. Once you learned that information, you will understand why the U.S has more violence than a country like Japan. I will briefly name some of them abstractly: biology, psychology, early life, religion, socioeconomics, geographical, drugs, alcohol, sex, gangs, and ethnic/racial diversity. Also, violence is much more correlative with men than women. Some are easier to address than others, but I don’t know if addressing part of the problem will diminish overall results.

jerv's avatar

@ibstubro Then I am surprised that you didn’t already know how one must be careful about how laws differ from state to state. And since driving laws are far more uniform than gun laws, they are not nearly as restrictive, and here is why I say that.

Cops just about everywhere in the US will prosecute you for driving 80+, but not all places will pull you over for having a rifle in the gun rack of your pickup. Drivers don’t have that additional burden placed on them; they only have to worry about one set of laws because the laws are mostly the same in every state. Gun owners have to be aware of the laws of multiple states, and also pay more attention to federal laws than drivers; most federal laws about driving are either echoed in state laws (speed limits on the interstate) or apply more to carmakers than to drivers (all cars made after 1995 must be OBDII). In other words, gun owners have enough restrictions that they can’t remember them all without conscious effort while drivers can easily remember what they need to know and learn it easily. I wasn’t even old enough to form complete sentences when I learned about speed limits and annual vehicle inspections, so driving laws must be pretty simple.

Of course, that assumes regular drivers as opposed to commercial drivers. Commercial drivers have more restrictions than the average commuter; generally about the same level of restriction as gun owners, and with almost as much variance between states. Those that think all places are the same usually wind up with tickets for jake-braking; some places require mufflers, some don’t allow it during certain hours, and some just ban it outright. And that’s just the brakes. There are plenty of other restrictions regarding the rest of the truck and it’s cargo.

Are you saying that commercial drivers are unregulated/under-regulated? You keep asserting that a group with a similar or greater level of regulation is under-regulated, so the only thing thing that makes sense to me is that you want to make trucker’s lives hell. But I sincerely doubt that is the case, leaving me confused in the absence of anything that sounds more like logic than cognitive dissonance.

@Jackiavelli I am a machinist. The 3D printers capable of printing guns are still considerably over $500, and they still need quite a bit of metal. On the other hand, lathes have been around for centuries, and a manual mill capable of doing firearms-grade work is almost as old and ubiquitous. Why use developing technology to make a gun that will melt and/or requires machined parts anyways when I can just use a commonly available technology that has centuries of proven results?

Regardless, you are entirely correct that guns are easy enough to make that we lost the lid on that Pandora’s Box long ago. The reason I brought up the machining thing is because the threat of homemade guns is far from a new threat. The equipment (or at least access to it) and skills required to make a gun are neither expensive nor arcane. But there has been so much focus on hobbyists with a $500 printer in their living room that people tend not to notice that many people have been doing the same things for centuries.

Jackiavelli's avatar

The 3D printers capable of printing guns are still considerably over $500

Rifle fires NATO rounds made on a $500 3D-Printer

On the other hand, lathes have been around for centuries, and a manual mill capable of doing firearms-grade work is almost as old and ubiquitous.

Thanks. I am aware of this. I used these examples on a hammer/gun topic that you were participating in. Either example drives the point home.

ibstubro's avatar

My point, @jerv, is that driver’s license’s are not one-size-fits-all.

A good place to start would be to require a semi-automatic permit holder to have the driver’s equivalent of a CDL.

jerv's avatar

@ibstubro Considering that guns don’t parallel cars very well, your analogy is a bit flawed. The difference between a semi-auto gun and other firearms is less like the difference between a passenger car and an 18-wheeler, and more like the difference between a base-model Corolla and a mid-level Camry. Just as the default car on the market assumes automatic transmission and A/C, the default firearm of today is semi-auto. In fact, it’s been that way for decades.

Now, I got my license in a ‘92 Buick Regal. Should I have had to go through a training course to get an endorsement on my license when I got my ‘87 Corolla? The controls and instrumentation were quite different, the handling was completely different, and basically that ‘87 Corolla had less in common with that ‘92 Regal than a revolver has with a semi-auto pistol. And should I have done that again with my ‘89 Golf, which not only was stick, but had a non-standard shift pattern? (Reverse next to 1st, because German.) From what I am reading, you ARE saying that.

Gun owners have to obey as many regulations as those who hold a CDL, so the fact that they aren’t issued a permit is really a matter of semantics. While it sounds good in theory, look how many incompetent drivers there are, even amongst those with a CDL. Documentation has no relevance to whether one is competent, and may in fact lead to the growth of a thriving illicit trade even amongst those who are generally decent, law-abiding folks who just hate paperwork.

If you don’t believe that, then look at the spikes in gun sales whenever the “Obama wants to take your guns!” meme makes a resurgence. Now imagine if those people went to places other than gun shops; maybe to a machinist or a friend who knows a guy. Imposing the sort of restriction you want would be like spraying gasoline on a house fire. At least with a far less onerous burden, people will be more likely to have their gun purchases done in a manner that matches a serial number to a photo ID.

Those states with lax laws on owning guns still have fairly strict laws on gun sales. If we hold the gun purchaser liable for anything the gun owner does, there is a much higher chance that the person whose ID you got when that gun was sold will either have that gun or have a valid bill of sale with the ID info of the new owner. You don’t even really need to track ownership; just follow the sales records. And if someone “loses” too many guns, treat them the same as drivers who have too many DUIs… and without the preemptive assumption of guilt that some people assume of anyone who even thinks of guns as anything other than pure evil.

Why would you want to destroy that balance and lose that info? Do you want a rise in unregistered firearms? Is your local arms dealer giving you a cut of his profits? Or are you just letting idealism cloud your reasoning? Are you trying to contain and control the situation, or do you want gun violence to be like a watermelon with you as Gallagher hitting it with the Sledg-o-matic, spraying it all over the place randomly and making a hell of a mess?

I sincerely think you want the wrong thing for the right reasons, but good intentions don’t make wrong things right.

ibstubro's avatar

I responded to the fuc question, @jerv.
I agree it was a piece of shit question to begin with, but if that was your concern, you should have started there, with @Apparently_Im_The_Grumpy_One‘s question, and not with my responses to it.

I stand by my posts, given the parameters of the question.

jerv's avatar

@ibstubro Fair enough.

That doesn’t change the fact that addressing the arguments of others can lead to a greater understanding of the issues raised by the question. It also doesn’t change the fact that making decisions off of a small number of data points of questionable veracity is considerably less informed than one made using a far larger and more reliable data set.

Please don’t take being addressed directly because you said a few things that I used to make a point personally. When I address someone other than OP in a thread like this, it is most often because they said something that sounded more like rhetoric than reasoning, and I want people to think rather than respond viscerally. And unless you are nothing more than a bobblehead pawn echoing whatever drivel the blowhard-of-the-week is spewing, then I have succeeded at least modestly by making you think a little.

More importantly, there other people viewing this thread. Since dialog is often far more educational than monologues, those standing by in the wings watching get a few more things to think about than they would if I’d just made a comment directly to OP and did a “Peace, out!” away never to return.

So, do you oppose exchange of ideas, or are you just miffed that you were a part of it?

stanleybmanly's avatar

@Jackiavelli I agree fully that all the laws and regulations Califotnia or for that matter Mexico cares to enact are meaningless in a land with the absolute surplus of lethal weaponry readily accessible in the United States. I don’t believe any factor you can possibly name accounts more for our top of the pole championship gun wielding than the sheer ease of laying your hands on a gun in the United States. Why is it so difficult to see the correlation between more guns and more deaths? Yes the overall murder and homicide rate is falling, but I think that has a great deal to due with the baby boom demographic having “passed through the snake”. What HAS changed decidedly is that while formerly sensational gun death statistics were concentrated in urban centers, things are no longer so simple. The cities of the country have complained for decades about the flood of weaponry from red regions of lax or non existent regulation. And the complaints were poo-pooed as somehow the fault of city bungling. What’s striking about the current wave of mass shootings is the overwhelming numbers of white folks shooting one another up in our predominantly gun loving Redlands. The consternation in these chickens coming home to roost is only scheduled to increase. But as I continue to emphasize, once there is our quantity of weapons in a society with our multitude of stresses there is only one plausible direction for mass shooting incidents, and that is decidedly North! We agree. There’s no stopping it!

Jackiavelli's avatar

Why is it so difficult to see the correlation between more guns and more deaths?

Simple – when controlling for all factors, there is no evidence for this claim.

overwhelming numbers of white folks shooting one another up in our predominantly gun loving Redlands.

Actually, the majority of the mass-shootings, when controlling all the factors such as ethnic population percentages,, were done by non-whites and they occurred in blue states – Oregon, California, Boston, Florida, Nevada, New York, Virginia, Colorado, and Chicago.

It also looks like the 355 mass-shooting figure is a lie. link

stanleybmanly's avatar

Do you really believe that proof is required to assert that the gun death rate is relative to the numbers of available firearms, combined with ease of access to those weapons?

Jackiavelli's avatar

Is that a serious question?

Do you really believe truth should be based on emotions?

stanleybmanly's avatar

More to the point, do you actually think discussion of the issue should be avoided for fear of neglect of diet and health issues? Doesn’t your claim that it is illogical to be alarmed by mass shooting incidents when we have so many other problems equivalent to stating that fire department revenues be shifted to counter diabetes? It isn’t false logic to state that at least the perception that the mass shooting incidents in this country are on the uptick AND GROWING in frequency. Are you SERIOUSLY proposing that the Daily Wire be considered an example of CREDIBLE journalism on a level with news sources supposedly exposed?

stanleybmanly's avatar

Emotions? The 2 facts in this discussion that are beyond dispute are simple and straightforward
1. This country leads the world far and away in firearms related deaths.
2. CREDIBLE estimates now certify that the numbers of firearms in civilian hands now exceed the numbers of civilians wielding them.

In view of those 2 realities, all the obfuscation and circular arguments available to you will not allow the summation that the 2 facts are unrelated .

jerv's avatar

@stanleybmanly I am older than I was, therefore gun violence rates are a function of my age.

If you disagree with that, then you know damn well that correlation is not causation.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Thank you (I think)

Jackiavelli's avatar

do you actually think discussion of the issue should be avoided for fear of neglect of diet and health issues?

I don’t think you’re understanding the points of my arguments. We all know that the majority of the public will not allow the government to control their diets, and force them to exercise. This is why most people are not discussing diet and exercise control. It is why the media doesn’t have a breaking news report of a bunch of people dying from a heart-attack in a single day. Therefore, 1 million+ people will continue to die from health issues.

For the “caring-about-lives-lost” crowd to now shift its focus towards guns because they lost the diet and exercise control argument, is disingenuous and hypocritical. They’re discussing guns now because the public allows it. More of the public is open to the idea of gun control than diet and exercise control. It isn’t because anti-gun rhetoric is ogical or has any evidence to it. Clearly it doesn’t when you compare this to health deaths. The caring-about-lives-lost completely falls apart when you compare it to health.

So you can discuss anything you want, and you can discuss health and guns simultaneously, but if you want to be taken seriously by people with opposing views, you’re going to have to make logical arguments and present the evidence. Yes, you should shut-up about guns.

It isn’t false logic to state that at least the perception that the mass shooting incidents in this country are on the uptick AND GROWING in frequency.

It is false, though. The evidence doesn’t support the claim.

Are you SERIOUSLY proposing that the Daily Wire be considered an example of CREDIBLE journalism on a level with news sources supposedly exposed?

You’re looking at the source of the reporting instead of the content. I don’t care if the source of the reporting has a bias, I read the content. If you don’t have an argument against the content, then this is just another emotional knee-jerk reaction.

In fact, the data for the non-white mass-shootings and blue-states were used from a liberal news source (motherjones). Other data, used by motherjones were found to be inaccurate or at least based on different definitions. So again, the source of the reporting is irrelevant. It is all about the content.

This country leads the world far and away in firearms related deaths.

False comparison. Doesn’t control for anything.

CREDIBLE estimates now certify that the numbers of firearms in civilian hands now exceed the numbers of civilians wielding them.

True. So?

all the obfuscation and circular arguments available to you will not allow the summation that the 2 facts are unrelated

The argument isn’t based on logic. It is based on evidence. Or in this case, a lack of evidence to show they’re related.

longgone's avatar


“But the fact remains that cars are more dangerous.”

Many things are. That’s not the point, though – it is ridiculously simple for a U.S.-American to purchase tools to more efficiently kill humans. If cars were routinely bought to kill other humans, they would be given much more thought.

“If you started restricting cars like guns – the uproar would spike like the punch at a college party.”

I agree.

@ARE_you_kidding_me Yes, but it may make more sense to compare the US with countries of similar development. A quick Google search just confirmed: The U.S. ranks 3rd of 45 similarly developed nations, in those lists. (I can’t link right now, for some reason.)

Apparently_Im_The_Grumpy_One's avatar

“Being an advocate of stronger gun laws exposes you to just about every spit-filled tirade that pro-gun hording types can come up with”
You needn’t read any further to see the mega-slant to the linked article. Is this a sitcom script?

“But guns are not designed to do anything but kill”
Another gem. This article is complete [redacted]. But at least it helps me see what rubbish people are buying into. Thanks for that at least.

If you buy some pills without the express intent of killing people.. but tons of people eat them and die.. should we really be talking about intent? Should we ignore massive numbers of deaths because of that “intent”? Should we ignore fatal liver deaths from hydroxycut just because they “didn’t mean to do that”? Whoops. We didn’t intend for you to die.

People purchase cars and (as backed by plenty of statistics) very efficiently kill lots of people.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@Jackiavelli I now realize that you’re teasing me and having fun at my expense, for only a fool would propose accepting content without considering the source. And as for the relationship between gun availability and shootings in America, the body count is all the “evidence” required, and as you state, the only thing necessary to refute my position is the deletion of logic. I am admittedly slow on the uptake, but I should have caught on with your claim that it is hypocritical to bemoan mass killings in the face of bad health and heart attacks. What an obvious pile, and I stepped right in it!

Jackiavelli's avatar

for only a fool would propose accepting content without considering the source

You misunderstood. The news outlet is a source. The content is the information they link to backup what they’re saying. That is the real source of information. PewResearch statistics is a real source of information that media sources use for backup. Census is a real source. Peer-reviewed works are real sources. It is pretty clear that you chose to question the validity of the source because you didn’t have logical reply to the content within the media source.

The only thing I will add is that even though there are more guns than people in the U.S, it doesn’t mean every individual is a gun-owner. The guns are owned by a minority of the U.S population. Between my two kids, my wife, and I, we own about 36 various firearms. Similar numbers for the community I reside in.

Your arguments remind of the limousine liberal who tells us how we need to make sacrifices and have diversity while living in their mansions in an upper-class, white, segregated community of which they own several of, while flying around in their private jets destroying the climate that they’re claiming needs to be saved with personal sacrifices.

Tell me, if someone bought a non-essential item, an item other than food, water, or clothing, and this someone claimed that they cared about the thousands of lives lost every day from starvation, would you take them seriously? Obviously, no, because instead of buying that non-essential item, they could have fed and clothed someone who was about to die. They chose to spend it on themselves. Here we see the actions of a person do not represent their claims of caringness and thus renders them disingenuous and hypocritical. This is what your arguments sound like when you speak of guns.

jerv's avatar

@Jackiavelli “Your arguments remind of the limousine liberal who tells us how we need to make sacrifices and have diversity while living in their mansions in an upper-class, white, segregated community of which they own several of, while flying around in their private jets destroying the climate that they’re claiming needs to be saved with personal sacrifices.”

You have the parties reversed on that. Well, unless you consider Dick Cheney, the Koch brothers, Rupert Murdoch, and the like to be Liberals. Oh, wait… you mentioned claiming to want to save the environment. That means that it isn’t a reversal so much as total cognitive dissonance.

Aside from that third paragraph, you’re pretty well correct though. I guess a broken clock is right twice a day.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@Jackiavelli But the question has nothing to do with my limousine, mansion living existence. IF I live in a society engineered to steer wealth my way, and lack the decency to share my good fortune, it in no invalidates my statement that the deck is stacked unfairly against the panhandling beggar the chauffeur swerves past on my way to the yacht club. I will grant you that I’m having a tough time getting your drift. Of course 300 million guns aren’t rationed out evenly in the country. And your family’s statisticaly disproportionate share of the nation’s gun wealth
may mean that a few of us disdain our God given right to pack. But turning this discussion toward a judgement on morality or hypocrisy is smoke before facts. You throw the word truth around with apparent ease. But to state that there is no evidence that gun deaths in United are a function of the availability of weapons defies both truth and common sense. Our over the top firearms statistics are onl possible here, because shooting people is comparatively easy to achieve here, and no complex psychological or sociological explanation can precede the ease with which those deaths can be achieved

Jackiavelli's avatar

it in no invalidates my statement that the deck is stacked unfairly

The validity of the argument within this example isn’t in question. The actions are in question.

But to state that there is no evidence that gun deaths in United are a function of the availability of weapons defies both truth and common sense.

Make proper comparisons and control for all known factors like any study would do, and then I will take your “evidence” seriously. I can do the same thing. Rate of Firearm Homicide Deaths By Year 1981–2010 Oh, look, firearm deaths have been declining for decades. Doesn’t quite fit your five-alarm-fire narrative, does it? Although, it looks like you changed your strategy. If I don’t take your “evidence” seriously, it must mean I’m a truth-denialist and lack common-sense. How’s this strategy working out for you?

jerv's avatar

@Jackiavelli The problem with statistics is interpretation, and those with an agenda on both/all sides of an issue will make their own rules. If an incident where 14 people die one shooting, or is it fourteen shootings? Your figure goes by death toll while dismissing the number of incidents, but many will choose between the 1 and the 14 based on which fits their narrative.

Jackiavelli's avatar

Exactly right. Thank you. My link was a mockery link to drive a point home which is to control for all factors before labeling it as evidence. Stanley isn’t even attempting to do that.

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